Yellow Fever Vaccine
by Diana Kohnle
What Is Yellow Fever?
Yellow fever is a virus that is transmitted to humans through mosquito bites.
Risk factors for getting yellow fever include traveling to an area where Yellow fever is present.
Symptoms for yellow fever include:
More serious complications include:
Treatment involves taking care of the infected person while they recover. There is no medicine to treat the illness.
Illness from yellow fever varies from a self-limited illness to hemorrhagic fever, which can be very severe and lead to death.
What Is the Yellow Fever Vaccine?
The vaccine is a weakened, live form of the yellow fever virus. The vaccine is created by growing the live virus in a lab. The vaccine is administered by a shot.
Who Should Get Vaccinated and When?
The following individuals should get vaccinated:
Travelers should be vaccinated at least 10 days before departure.
The vaccine lasts for 10 years. Every 10 years, a booster is required if you are at risk for contracting yellow fever.
What Are the Risks Associated With Yellow Fever Vaccine?
Common minor side effects include:
Rare, serious side effects include:
Who Should Not Get Vaccinated?
The vaccine should not be given to:
What Other Ways Can Yellow Fever Be Prevented Besides Vaccination?
To decrease your chance of getting yellow fever, do the following:
What Happens in the Event of an Outbreak?
An outbreak of yellow fever in the United States is unlikely since the virus is not geographically present in this country. But in the event of an outbreak, uninfected people would be vaccinated and precautions would be taken to reduce transmission.
WHERE CAN I GET MORE INFORMATION?
National Library of Medicine
Vaccine and Immunizations
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Vaccine Information Center website. Available at: http://www.chop.edu/consumer/jsp/division/generic.jsp?id=75740 . Accessed February 4, 2007.
The Directors of Health Promotion and Education website. Available at: http://www.dhpe.org/infect/yellow.html . Accessed February 4, 2007.
Jentes ES, Poumerol G, Gershman MD, et al. The revised global yellow fever risk map and recommendations for vaccination, 2010: consensus of the Informal WHO Working Group on Geographic Risk for Yellow Fever. Lancet Infect Dis. 2011;11(8):622-632.
Khromava AY, Eidex RB, Weld LH, et al. Yellow Fever Vaccine Safety Working Group. Yellow fever vaccine: an updated assessment of advanced age as a risk factor for serious adverse events. Vaccine . 2005 May 9;23(25):3256-63.
Staples JE, Gershman M, Fischer M. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Yellow fever vaccine: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR Recomm Rep . 2010 Jul 30;59(RR-7):1-27.
Thomas RE, Lorenzetti DL, Spragins W, Jackson D, Williamson T. Active and passive surveillance of yellow fever vaccine 17D or 17DD-associated serious adverse events: systematic review. Vaccine. 2011;29(28):4544-4555.
US Department of Health and Human Services, National Immunization Program website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/ . Accessed March 3, 2008.
Yellow fever vaccine. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated February 2010. Accessed February 19, 2010.
Yellow fever vaccine: what you need to know. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/vis/downloads/vis-yf.pdf . Published March 30, 2012. Accessed February 24, 2012.
2/19/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php : Transmission of yellow fever vaccine virus through breast-feeding—Brazil, 2009. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) . 2010;59(05):130.
Last reviewed June 2012 by Lawrence Frisch, MD, MPH